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The Philosophy statement of Teaching and Learning in Theory of Knowledge programme at JIRS is of particular importance, since it will encourage our students on this Garden city of India to see themselves as wider world citizens by means of critical thinking and thoughtful reflection on what they know how they know it and how to use this knowing responsibly. By studying global issues which have relevance to society on a smaller or larger scale, they will be encouraged to look towards playing their part in the wider community through gaining ownership of their knowledge by understanding the precise nature of it. By applying a deeper understanding of inter-related concepts to an increasingly inter-connected world, we aim to encourage them to become responsible, thoughtful, sensitive and confident participants in their world.
By centralizing the issue of 'What is truth?' and 'How do I know what I know? We expect students to review their own cultural and ideological perceptions and be aware of the needs
And perspective of others; to become more engaged and reliable, open-minded international citizens.
Beginning with the IB & JIRS mission statement and the learner profile, students will engage in the practical exploration of higher-level thinking skills by means of research projects, individual presentations, group discussion, debate, persuasive speaking and writing, essays, and reflection on CAS projects and school/ community/ national and international issues. They will research from contemporary writings and classical literature, case studies, scientific papers and data, the media, historical documents and material originally in languages other than their own.
The linking questions running through both knowledge issues and the ways of knowing will form a basis of reference and reflection throughout the two years. The TOK course is seen as an integral part of the DP, the intellectual powerhouse fuelling the programme, and indeed the school as a whole. It is expected that the work done in TOK, both academic and practical in the form of the presentations, will be shared by the school community as a means of enriching the way all our students, begin to understand the concept of knowledge and consider the nature of their own methods of learning and understanding. The TOK course will, where appropriate, impact positively upon the student's approach to the Extended Essay.
Our aim is to foster active and engaged learners who will relish the wealth of information and ideas around them. We hope they will look to the wider community by means of the internet and personal travel in order to maintain a vibrant international approach to their study of the nature of knowledge and their quest to understand how we acquire it.
A study of the knowledge issues and claims cutting across all the subject areas of the hexagon will encourage a deeper understanding of their SL and HL choices.
Theory of Knowledge program will
develop skills and habits of critical inquiry.
clarify why these skills and habits of inquiry are important to the academic Areas of Knowledge.
recognize that different disciplines have different kinds and ways of creating knowledge.
explore the links between different Ways of Knowing and Areas of Knowledge.
recognize the interpretative nature of knowledge claims as influenced by personal and cultural biases.
consider the responsibilities of creating and validating knowledge claims.
explore the implications of knowledge claims on the local and global community.
Theory of Knowledge students will be able to:
recognize logical fallacies and biases found in knowledge claims and propaganda pieces in a variety of media formats.
demonstrate TOK "thinking skills".
critique writings from a variety of Areas of Knowledge and Ways of Knowing.
make connections between personal experiences and TOK enquires.
participate with critical awareness and sensitivity in group discussions.
demonstrate a capacity for imaginative and synergetic thinking
give clear and coherent oral presentations exploring the problems of knowledge in a given topic.
write clear and coherent essays on the problems of knowledge resulting from given statements of knowledge claims or truths.
ToK is the heart of the DP program hence all students must do this programme, hence no pre-requisites
Course Credits / Certificates awarded (if applicable)
Content and Skills
Year one : Term one - Mid July - Mid October
Introduction to the concept of knowledge
What is the nature of knowledge?
What is the purpose of knowledge?
Aspects of knowledge; beliefs and truths
Who are the knower's?
What are the responsibilities which being a knower brings?
The role of truth and the absolute.
Group presentation exhibiting the nature of knowledge and the issues arising
Term two Mid Nov. - Mid May
The four different ways of knowing:
What is language?
Other forms of communication
Metaphor versus reality
How can we trust our senses?
How can we trust the perceptions of others?
Reason, rationality and logic
How does reason reinforce our knowledge?
What are the strengths and limitations of logic?
The conflict of reason and emotion
Should emotion play a role in our decision making?
Students identify and explore an area of personal concern affected by these problems of knowing.
Internal, formally-assessed essay and oral presentation with question/answer session
Areas of knowledge:
Natural sciences, Human sciences, History
Ways of collecting data and information
How can we be sure of the data we collect?
Certainty and evidence
The role of intuition, explanation and interpretation
The responsibilities implied by research
The impact of technology on collecting information
The interface of technology and humanity
Substantial essay/thesis over summer break on a prescribed topic; internal formal assessment and oral presentation in September [year 2]
Year two: Term one Mid July - Mid October
Methods of knowing and knowledge claims
Mathematics and its links to reality and the world
Mathematical truth and proof
Mathematics: created or discovered?
Scope and use
The nature of ethics
Personal and global values
The impact of technology
The interface of technology and humanity
What is art?
Role and responsibilities in the community
Values and personal perspectives
End of first half term: internal, formally-assessed essay and oral presentation.
After half-term break: begin planning and work on 1200-1600 word essay to be submitted to IB March [second week]
Practice in drafting and presenting essay topics
Draft preparation of one of ten generic titles for external assessment.
Term two Mid Nov. - Mid Feb.
Start of term: supervision of work on final essay to be submitted to IB March [second week]
Drafting of self-evaluation report
Submission of final essay papers
Finalize choice of oral presentations
[problem solving, group discussion]
[Memory, preparation, Time Mgt.]
[Presentation, Public Speaking]
Students are expected to come prepared to class, with textbooks and notes for the current topic. Students are expected to keep their notes in a file.
Textbooks and Materials used
The required Textbooks, materials will be provided by the school to the students in the beginning of the DP Year 1. [TOK COURSE COMPANION - RICHARD VAN DE LAGEMAAT]
The TOK course contributes, with the Extended Essay, to the IB DP a maximum 3 points, by means of an essay (externally assessed) and a presentation (assessed internally and marks sent to IB for moderation)
IB grade descriptors and related rubrics will be introduced to the students from the start during a TOK/Extended Essay/CAS day retreat, and an understanding of the workings of such descriptors, and their use for all marking by teachers of any substantial pieces of work, will for an integral aspect of internal assessment.
External assessment 40 points
Essay on a prescribed title (1200-1600 words)
The title is chosen from a list of ten titles prescribed by the IB for each exam session.
Questions are generic, and of a trans-disciplinary nature.
Assessment is external, and is based on the four criteria in the TOK guide:
â€¢ Understanding knowledge issues
â€¢ KnowerÂ´s perspective
â€¢ Quality of analysis of knowledge issues
â€¢ Organization of ideas
The title chosen must be exactly as stated in the question list, and not altered in any way.
Whilst there should be evidence of some research in both the essay and presentation assessments, the aim here is to show the student understands of the link between areas of knowledge and ways of knowing them, by means of sustained reflection and analysis.
Final essays will be drafted in the second half of the first term and the first half of the second term of the second DP year, the period running from November to February for final submission to the IB in early-March.
Submission of TOK externally assessed essays to IB
Submit TOK predicted grades and marks for oral presentations
Internal assessment/ externally moderated 20 points
One presentation to the class approx 10 minutes per student
This presentation can be either individual or in a small group, which must be no more than 3
Students. The intention is that a 'real world' situation, of particular interest to the student, will form the basis for an exploration of the relevant knowledge issues.
Assessment is done by the TOK teaching group, according to the four criteria in the TOK guide:
â€¢ Identification of knowledge issue(s)
â€¢ Treatment of knowledge issue(s)
â€¢ Knower's perspective
Students/groups will prepare and submit a presentation planning document, and all students
Individually will complete and submit a self-evaluation report using the form in the HoP
Individual presentations will last for approximately ten minutes; where a group presentation is
Selected, there will still be sufficient time given for individual marks to be allocated and for the
Allocation of all the assessment criteria to be used for each student. Presentations will be recorded and some may be required to be sent to the IB for moderation.
Ongoing and Terminal Internal Assessment
All internal marking and assessment is intended to practice, mirror, prepare for, and feed into the types of assessment marked externally, or submitted for external moderation. It is also intended to produce students for whom learning skills are paramount, in order to create effective and reflective life-long learners. With this aim, there will be ongoing practice essays set as part of regular homework and end of term/year assessment, individual and group presentation practices, and self-evaluation exercises. There will be experience in peer editing, group evaluation and assessment against rubrics.
Written exercises will be set which develop critical thinking, analysis and communication skills. TOK assessment criteria and grade descriptors will be used for evaluating longer written pieces and oral presentations. There will be formal assessments marked along these lines at points during the course as described in the 'topics' section of this document.
Students will experience individual and group presentations throughout the two year course with the aim of having good sources from which to choose one piece which is assessed internally and held within the school until the close of session. The teacher and student will select the best one of these for assessment. These may utilize some of the following approaches: interviews, dialogues, debates, role-plays, PowerPoint and video displays, dramatized skits, and may involve visual aids, props and written material as a stimulus. Where group presentations are submitted, marks will still be allocated on an individual basis.